Advertising in RSS feeds

I really don’t like advertising in my RSS feeds – especially silly advertisements like this one: 


The screenshot above is of Robert Scoble’s RSS feed.  I have to say, in all honesty, that such advertising simply lowers the perceived tone and quality of a blog.  And, its all downhill from there – clicking on the advert takes us to this (oh well, at least it wasn’t one of those irritating “fun” sites that won’t let you close the page without jumping through dialogue hoops):



Don’t feel too bad Rob – StillSecure were showing the same advert:



For those of you who really want/need to pollute your feeds with advertising (personally, I hope that you don’t succumb to the temptation), please remember that there are more discreet advertising styles around the place – take TidBITS for example – their advertisements are discreet, relevant to the theme of the blog, and they maintain an aura of professionalism:


This one is teetering on the edge of irritating, from the The Daily WTF blog


A big benefit of RSS, for me, has been the fact that it was advertising free for a long time.  It is sad that that benefit is being eroded away.  Oh well, at least the darned things aren’t Flash adverts.

Published Wed, Jan 14 2009 16:11 by sandi
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# re: Advertising in RSS feeds

Wednesday, January 14, 2009 6:16 PM by Kimberly

Maybe no Flash advertising right now but referer headers which might initiate a redirect. ;)

And never forget that even displaying an innocent image from a website might trigger a bad iframe or script.



# re: Advertising in RSS feeds

Thursday, January 15, 2009 12:07 AM by Cd-MaN

Nothing is free. The main benefit of an RSS feed is the speed with which you can navigate between different sites (ie you have category "Foo" in your feedreader and you can read all the sites there which you are interested in).

The drawback is that "classical" revenue models (placing ads on the site) are not working with this, so now the ads are placed in the feeds. Look at it from this viewpoint: after all, you are getting something for free.

There is a delicate balance there, but this is the only way to find the equilibrium point: by pushing back and forth...